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Re: Herrerasaurus - a sauropodomorph, really?



On Sat, Oct 3, 2009 at 3:43 PM, B tH <soylentgreenistrex@yahoo.com> wrote:
>
> Sauropodomorph's include meat-eaters?
> They sound like they should be just prior
> to prosauropods ... maybe a better fitting
> name for this group that doesn't sound like
> it's leaning toward fern chewers ...

What's wrong with "lizard foot forms" including carnivores?

Here's the definitional history of the taxon name "Sauropodomorpha":
http://www.taxonsearch.org/dev/taxon_edit.php?Action=View&tax_id=279
It was once defined as a node-based clade (Salgado et al. 1997, Sereno
1998), but this proved to be unstable as new phylogenies indicated the
paraphyly of Prosauropoda. Now it is more usually defined as a
branch-based clade -- something along the lines of "the initial
ancestor of [insert sauropod species] which was not also ancestral to
[insertone or more non-sauropodomorph species], and all descendants
thereof". For example, Sereno (2005) defined it as, "The most
inclusive clade containing Saltasaurus loricatus Bonaparte and Powell
1980 but not Passer domesticus (Linnaeus 1758) [or] Triceratops
horridus Marsh 1889."

Note that nothing in the name or the definitions has anything to do with diet.
-- 
T. Michael Keesey
Technical Consultant and Developer, Internet Technologies
Glendale, California
http://tmkeesey.net/